Don’t reverse clinical need to keep Women & Children’s Centre at PRH
This week the area’s two Clinical Commissioning Groups meet to consider the much-delayed consultation business case for Future Fit.
This would see major changes to services at our two main hospitals – the Princess Royal in Telford and the Royal Shrewsbury.
Under the proposal’s preferred option for consultation the PRH’s £28m Women & Childrens Centre, opened just three years ago, would move to the RSH.
This would reverse a decision endorsed by the then Minister of State for Health based on clinical need to concentrate Womens & Children services at the PRH. The clinical need for this has not changed.
In April 2011, Minster of State for Health Simon Burns MP wrote to the Welsh Assembly about concerns that were being raised about maternity services at Shropshire’s hospitals.
He said that a consultation published by the CCG’s forerunners the area’s PCTs and the Shrewsbury and Telford Hospitals Trust (SaTH) outlined why the local NHS believed change was needed to some services in Shropshire including “inpatient children’s services and services provided in the maternity building at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital Site.
The letter (available here) states: “Proposals appear to show sound evidence for the delivery of the bulk of children and maternity services at the Princess Royal Hospital, Telford.”
Council leader Shaun Davies has urged members of Telford & Wrekin CCG and local GPs to stand by the Minister’s statement.
“This was a decision based on clinical need. Nothing has changed.
“I call on the CCG members and GPs to remember the reasons why the Women & Childrens centre was built in Telford in the first place as confirmed in a letter from the Minister just six years ago. If anything that need now is stronger and clearer than ever.
“I urge them to not support any decision that reverses this proven clinical need. Stick with your original plan and not a Future Fit plan that makes no sense, does not stack up financially and will inconvenience the most people.“
The Future Fit plans' preferred option would also downgrade the PRH’s A&E department to an Urgent Care Centre.